We very much look forward to seeing you!
The agenda for the lunchtime session is:
Research Presentation: 'Language and Literacy in the West Kimberley:
The case for 3 and 4 year old Indigenous learners'
by Dr Sacha De Velle, Australian Council for Educational Research
Language and Literacy in the West Kimberley: The case for 3 and 4 year old Indigenous learners.
By Sacha DeVelle & Prue Anderson
The gap in literacy achievement between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal students has been widely publicised, and evidence from the Western Australian Child Health Survey conducted in 2004 (Zubrick et al; 2008) shows that a substantial proportion of Aboriginal children are behind the starting gate when school begins. Research addressing the reasons for the ‘gap’ in achievement has raised questions in regards to Aboriginal learners. For example, is performance a reflection on the ways in which they are being taught, or in how they are tested? Are their linguistic and cultural characteristics being adequately considerered? What other factors are involved? This presentation addresses such questions with reference to the development of an online diagnostic tool designed for remote, Aboriginal learners aged 3-4 years old. In October 2014 we travelled to the Kimberley region to visit a number of indigenous schools and communities in the Broome, Fitzroy Crossing and Derby regions. Feedback was extremely positive from all communities visited, and highlighted a specific need for the proposed tool. Production is now underway, and includes the use of authentic illustrations from the region to support the learning process. To accommodate the range of language abilities (Malcolm, 2011), the tool will be delivered in Kimberley Kriol and Standard Australian English (SAE), and piloted in the West Kimberley region of Western Australia.
Topic areas: Aboriginal early learners; language development; assessment; literacy; English language learners; schooling in the West Kimberley region.
About the speaker:
Dr Sacha DeVelle is Manager and Principal Research Fellow for the Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER) in Perth, West Australia. She has an extensive teaching and research background in educational assessment and international development gained from working in Australia, the United Kingdom, the UAE, Latin America and East Africa.
Dr DeVelle worked for Cambridge English where she was responsible for the global IELTS research agenda, language testing and assessment projects. She then ran her own educational consultancy in London and Cambridge. She is also the founder of ‘Cambridge to Africa’, a UK registered charity working with disadvantaged children in sub-Saharan Africa. In May 2013 she received the University of Queensland Vice Chancellor Equity and Diversity Highly Commended award, recognising her contribution to children’s education in Africa.
Dr DeVelle’s current projects include investigating how learners process feedback, (an ACER initiative that brings together psychologists, neuroscientists and educators to measure how the brain learns); and the development of an online diagnostic tool to measure literacy and numeracy skills for young, disadvantaged Indigenous learners living in the Kimberley region of West Australia.
When & Where
Centre for Global Equality
The Centre for Global Equality focuses the resources available in world centres of excellence such as Cambridge on evolving innovative solutions to global challenges. We contribute to greater global equality by improving access for the underprivileged to the intellectual, social and financial resources usually reserved for the elite.
We are a network of NGOs, academics, businesses and individuals who work collaboratively towards reducing extreme inequality, a root cause of poverty and marginalisation globally. Based in Cambridge, we have over 50 member organisations that work on more than 90 projects in 27 countries.
For more information please visit: www.centreforglobalequality.org